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tv   MSNBC Live With Stephanie Ruhle  MSNBC  December 27, 2017 6:00am-7:00am PST

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and go home and watch it at your recommendation. >> an hour and a half on youtube, watch it. that ynk you all for being h us today. for now david picks up the coverage with more details on that lawsuit accusing the pentagon to of failing to report crimes to the gun database. >> hi there, i'm david gura in for stephanie ruhle this morning. dereliction of duty. three cities sue the pentagon for failing to report convictions to a gun database for 20 years allowing dangerous weapons to fall into the hands of felons. a royal rendezvous. barack obama goes one-on-one with prince harry sounding off on everything from his thoughts on leaving office to social media's ability to divide a nation. and man of steel. >> one of the dangers of the internet is that people can have entire low different realities. >> man of steel, president trump with some strong words on the campaign trail. >> when i'm president, guess
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what, steel is coming back. >> but almost a year into his presidency, american-made steel is on the decline as imports rise. have the president's actions actually hastened the demise of the american steel worker? we begin with a failure to report. three cities suing the department of defense. new york city, philadelphia and san francisco argue many service members disqualified from owning guns were not reported to the national background check system. i've got 18 credible team of reporters and guests to break this down. let's start with hans nichols. hans, what can you tell us about this lawsuit? >> it's a pretty basic lawsuit. it seeks to force the department of defense, the pentagon, to comply with their own law. by their own admission many service are not in compliance with the law. it and from 2015 to 2016 about 2,500 cases and roughly a third across all the services weren't
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in compliance. the law requires them if someone in the military is convicted, basically the equivalent of a felony serving more than one year, that data needs to be transferred to the database, the national database. you look at individually 41% for the army, this is failure to comply. 36% for the navy, 36% for the marine corps and 14% for the air force. it was the air force that had the challenge, the problem with devin kelley, the individual who obtained a gun after being convicted of the equivalent of a felony, bought a gun, shot up around 25 people in texas. that's where we really realized the extent of this problem. now here's what the pentagon is saying, david. they're saying they want to look into it. they're saying the department continues to work with the services as they review and refine their policies and procedures to ensure qualifying criminal history information is submitted to the fbi. now, attorney general jeff sessions has also ordered a review of the database. and when you look at what the suit actually does, it wants to
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have a potential court order against secretary mattis to hold him in contempt if the pentagon doesn't get in compliance with the law. david. >> hans, i just want to ask you about what precipitated this. you mentioned devin kelley, the shooter responsible for that horrible shooting in sutherland springs. to what degree was a catalyst for all of this? >> it was a major catalyst. in the past the pentagon has done reviews, but the idea that an individual who should not have access to a gun, should have been prevented by a national gun database, the idea that that paperwork wasn't filed properly, the other services are looking into it as well. there was an i.g. report that came out that looked at it more broadly but devin kelley was the precipitating factor and he did force the air force to go back and look at their books and realize the extent of the problem. >> what indications do you have they're going to take it seriously this time around? i recall after a number of these shootings in the past often the military has looked at it how difficult it is to have a handgun on a military base or
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facility. what indications do you have here the pentagon will take it seriously this time around? >> it seems that there are different approaches in all four services. the air force has tried to get out in front of this problem once they realized the extent of it so it looks like there could be something defense department-wide, that's the statement we have. how do you go back 15, 20 years when not all the data has digitized. the air force had this challenge. when the air force looked at their data, they said, wait a second, we can go back to a certain date in time but after that it's all paper and there are different requirements -- not requirements, but procedures at individual bases how this is all done. there's a general consensus they have a problem across all ser s services and this needs to be streamlined and be compliant with the law. >> i'll bring in kevin surilli, donna edwards of maryland who's a fellow at the brennan center for justice and robert traynham
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with the bipartisan policy center. congressman, let me start about you and get your reaction to this suit, three cities filing suit against the pentagon naming the secretary of defense in that suit. what's your reaction to it? >> i think the department of defense needs to come into compliance with the law. clearly there are reporting gaps that ended up -- resulted at least in the instance in devin kelley in a mass shooting in a church in texas. but really this highlights the gaping hole and the gap between the reporting system and those who are required to report, whether that's in the military or the civilian sector. and what we haven't talked about is while this one instance that led up to the reporting problem, that that applied to a felony. but the federal law actually requires reporting misdemeanor domestic violence offenses and protective orders. so the holes that we see actually could be much greater than the i.g. report even indicates.
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>> robert traynham, hans nichols doing some fine reporting. the pentagon has been repeatedly been chide dechlt since the 1990s by its own inspector general for woefully failing to comply with the law. in a 2015 report and another one issued a few weeks ago, investigators nearly one in three court-martial convictions that should have barred defendants from gun purchases have gone unrecord by the military. this is an issue of compliance here. what do you make of it? >> there's a lack of accountability for individuals to report this data. we know that the data is only important if it's centralized and people are taking this seriously. what's also very interesting here is these are democratic mayors that are suing a republican administration. i don't want to make this overly partisan but i do find that a little more than an interesting coincidence. we have the mayor of philadelphia, the mayor of san francisco and the mayor of new york. so granted these are three very large metropolitan cities. i assume their crime rate is fairly high.
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what's also interesting is that chicago didn't join the lawsuit as well. nevertheless, i finding it interesting that they have decided to do this in court. >> kevin, we're nearing the end of 2017, the time we look back on the year that was. there's a sobering statistic when you look at the number of mass shootings we had in 2017. 339 of them in the u.s. alone. i just want to ask you what the conversation is like in washington, where you are about gun control at this point in light of that figure i just mentioned. >> david, what conversation? the fact of the matter is that there really isn't one. but to everybody's point, and i would piggyback off of what hans said, look, this is actually a nonpartisan issue in the sense of the argument of enforcing laws that are already on the books. this is something that typically after those tragic shootings that you just alluded to we don't hear much b it becomes a partisan fight between democrats
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and republicans. what we don't know is how and why lawmakers and enforcement officials are not enforcing laws already on the books. the point that i would quickly make is that essentially this comes down to money. i think that this is going to shift to the funding and the funding of the different agencies and enforcement agencies across its country on every level from local, state and national level, for their ability to modernize, yes, these background check systems to bring them into the new technological era but also to enforce them. and that's something that really is a nonpartisan issue on capitol hill. but because of the political climate and culture that we live in typically does not happen after these shootings. >> congresswoman, i think about the largest shootings from this year, the shooting in las vegas and sutherland springs and certainly just across the potomac when steve scalise was injured right there outside washington, d.c. should we stop looking for c
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catalysts for congress to do more? how dispirited are you on the prospects of there being action on capitol hill? >> we have long since passed the time we should be looking for catalysts. the clear point is that we have a reporting system that exists. but if you can't get the data into the reporting system, then these cases fall through the cracks, whether domestic violence concerns or other prohibitions where people who actually should be in the system under the existing law. and so congress both needs to close the loopholes that exist in the existing law but the agencies need to enforce this law and require the reporting. i mean we had the instance with mother emanuel church where an offense didn't make its way into the database that resulted in somebody else getting a gun and killing innocent people. and so we are long since past that. i just think that congress has
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the ability to do something right now that is at a minimum, and that involves enforcing current -- making sure that current law is enforced and clearing up some of these loopholes. and that's sort of the low-hanging fruit when it comes to sensible gun laws. >> robert traynham, how do you think the white house will respond to this? certainly we have the pentagon saying they'll take things seriously. you look at president trump and we've seen some evolution in his position on gun control. how do you suspect the white house will respond to this call for more compliance, many republicans have said they'd be in favor for more of. >> i think we'll hear sarah sanders say of course there should be compliance, of course we'll look into this. can i go back for a second. there's a reason why congress is not acting right now. it's called jerry mangerrymande. there's no political pressure -- you would have thought after las vegas, you would have thought
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after south carolina, you would have thought after all these mass gun shootings that congress would have rushed to some type of gun control. the reason why they did not do that is because there was no political pressure from the hard right in these gerrymandered districts for those members to do something. we're not going to see anything done from a congressional standpoint until members of congress flip over. >> congresswoman, i'd like you to respond to that. we've had the conversation about roy moore in alabama and sexual harassment. we've seen many people who doubted the accusers. how much is politics superseding the moral high ground here? >> well, you know, you have only to look at what's driving public policy when it comes to sensible gun regulation, and that's the national rifle association that pours millions of dollars into the political process and controls the agenda. these members of congress know what the problem is, but they're afraid to act. >> certainly going to be a story we'll continue to follow here at
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msnbc. i want to get to a new report from the associated press about the rift between president trump and attorney general jeff sessions, seemingly showing no signs of healing. msnbc's garrett haake is live in florida, close to where the president is spending the holidays here in 2017. garrett, what's this about? i know the rift dates back to that russia investigation. what's the latest wrinkle here? >> reporter: well, the core of this report is always about the russia investigation. if jeff sessions had not recused himself early on from all matters russia and campaign related, bob mueller would probably be on a beach somewhere or playing golf instead of acting as the special prosecutor in this russia case, and that continues to be a point of contention for this president and for his attorney general. and it's ironic, david, because there's no one in this administration who is more ideologically aligned with president trump than jeff sessions, his attorney general. they agree on immigration, they agree on homeland security issues, they agreed at least in
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principle during the campaign on the concept they wanted a law and order justice department to look like. but over time it's become increasingly clear that the president has grown frustrated with sessions being hands-off on the russia investigation and also not being -- the justice department not being exactly an arm of white house policy. the justice department has long traditionally had some freedom of action on their own, some freedom to follow their own investigatory leads and prerogatives. and you see some of the president's frustration in that in the way he tweets at jeff sessions and the way he talks about the fbi and the way he attempts to somewhat direct investigations through his twitter feed. and if you'll permit me a small bit of speculation, i think it's entirely possible that that rift and that frustration could increase in the new year if and when the president connects the loss of jeff sessions' senate seat in alabama to the democrat doug jones to his more of an
quote
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inability to get things done in the united states senate. the president potentially making that calculation down the road, that having sessions as an ally in the doj may not be worth the cost of that single senate seat in deep red alabama that should have been a republican senate seat. david, one other bit of news just since we've been talking, the president has arrived to, we believe, play golf at his trump international golf course here in palm beach. he's done so every other day this vacation except for christmas day itself. >> the vacation update. i want to go to kevin, you're there in d.c. what have you heard from your sources here about this relationship between jeff sessions and the president of the united states. i think in your colleague's book about steve bannon, about the bet here that jeff sessions, a senator, took on supporting donald trump. as we heard from garrett haake, this relationship has seemingly soured over the course of the last year. what are your sources saying about the integrity of that relationship. >> david, it wouldn't be the holidays without a little family drama. in the trump administration they have a lot of drama, so to
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speak, between the attorney general. look, you talk to folks who work with this administration and just yesterday i was speaking with a source who works frequently with this administration. according to this source, i think the anticipation right now is when is the shuffle going to happen, as we head into the new year. we've been following and reporting about potential developments of various political switcheroos as we enter into the new calendar year. when that begins to happen is really going to be interesting because when you talk about foreign policy posts, whether it's secretary of state rex tillerson, for example, and as we look at the ongoing situation developing in north korea, how the timing of the first shuffle within this administration begins to play out and how that investigation plays out, let's not forget that paul manafort faces the court trial in the spring of this year. now, some republicans are calling on mr. mueller to wrap up his investigation and we've noticed a pivot in the sense of attorney general jeff sessions starting to ramp up pressure on,
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yep, who else, hillary clinton. so this is very much ongoing and it's who's up and who's down. it's trump world as we know it. >> congressman edwards, are you surprised that we've seen the attorney general hang on to that position? we've certainly seen departures from the president's cabinet. >> well, surprise. if jeff sessions is hanging by a thread, there's no excuse for him standing on the sidelines and not defending the men and women of the fbi when they have come under attack by the president. and so i would say that jeff sessions -- i mean he's twiddling around in the department of justice but he's not defending those who work for him and those who defend and risk their lives for the rest of us. i think that's unforgivable. the attacks that the president has gone on against the fbi, against law enforcement, is really unprecedented and i think that jeff sessions may not be there for very long and so the least he could do is to stand up
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and do his job and defend his department. >> robert traynham, what's your feeling of how safe jeff sessions is at this point. i look at the commentary from the president about andrew mccabe and what he said about bob mueller. this started many months ago when you had the president going after jeff sessions wondering why he wasn't doing x, y or z. how safe do you think he is in the context of this administration? >> here's two unfortunate truths. he's skating on thin ice, but everybody in the trump white house is skating on thin ice. here's the ramifications of that. jeff sessions can easily be replaced, but who would he be replaced by so there's a ripple effect here. we have lindsey graham, john mccain, mitch mcconnell, several republicans going on record saying that jeff sessions should stay in the justice department. so the president has a little bit of a conundrum here. we haven't even talked about russia in terms of the pr ramifications if he was to fire sessions. so i think in his heart of hearts, donald trump believes that jeff sessions has failed
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him, he's not very loyal. but i think donald trump also realizes that he doesn't know who he'd replace jeff sessions with and whether or not he or she would get confirmed by the senate. >> the congressman mentioned attacks on the fbi and the justice department. it strikes me this is starting to have an effect on the integrity of many of these institutions, how people feel about them and i would suspect how people who work there feel about how they're regarded. >> there's no question that this is unprecedented in the sense of where this administration has taken its attacks, political attacks against the intelligence community. that seaid, it is part of a historical trend that we've seen both from democrats and republican administrations, particularly really ramped up during the last presidential campaign. on the flip side when you talk about intelligence community sources as i have within the past week, i can tell you there is a frustration and a concern about the long standing damage that this could potentially do
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with regards to the intelligence community. and then when you play that forward, especially with the politics, domestic politics here, especially within the republican party, i can tell you that i have spoken with prominent republicans in congress as well as senior republican lobbyists in the financial world who are very much at odds with the political attacks that we've seen coming from this administration on the intelligence community and the lasting damage that that potentially could do. at the end of the day, the justice department should be and ought to be as well as the fbi and cia officials should be and ought to be very separate in terms of the balance of power in the nation. >> great to speak with all of you. thank you very much for your time on this wednesday morning. next, the prince harry and president obama sit down for a rare interview, obama's first since leaving the white house. our former commander in chief issues a warning to world leaders about social media. for the prince's part he dropped some news on his upcoming
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all of us in leadership have to find ways in which we can recreate a common space on the internet. one of the dangers of the internet is that people can have entirely different realities. they can be just cocooned in information that reinforces their current biases. >> barack obama warning world leaders against using social media to foster division, without naming names n his first one-on-one interview since leaving office, the former president sat down with prince harry to reflect on his last day in the white house, his life post-presidency and what he sees for the future. matt bradley is in london with more. matt, let's just start with the back story here, how this interview came about, indeed the president's first since leaving the white house. >> well, that's right, david. this was a guest interview by prince harry, the prince of wales. this is a relatively rare
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interview for the former president. as you mentioned, a very unusual guest host, prince harry of wales. it was actually shot last september on your side of the pond in toronto for the bbc and just released today. if for no other reason, the interview was interesting because of this odd couple it presented. the former u.s. president has taken on a much less public role since he left office. this is really his only real interview, although he's hit campaigns for different candidates, the only real interview since leaving office. meanwhile, this young royal, prince harry, has actually stepped into a far more public role. he just became engaged to american actress meghan markle and the two will be married in may. if there's any one man who's more famous than barack obama at this point it could be prince harry. the two delivered a pretty light-hearted back and forth. take a listen. >> boxers or briefs? >> sorry, we don't answer those
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questions. >> lebron james or michael jordan? >> jordan. although i love lebron. but i'm a chicago guy. >> aretha franklin or tina turner. >> aretha is the best. >> kim or khloe? >> this one i have to defer on. >> okay. harry or william? >> william right now. >> so the interview touched primarily on the president's feelings about the social discourse in the united states and the president's future ambitio ambitions, his life since leaving the white house office and some of the most revealing questions really dealt with the legacy that president obama felt that he left behind and how he felt upon leaving office. take a listen to this. >> the sense that there was a completion and that we had done the work in a way that preserved our integrity i think was a satisfying feeling. that was mixed with all the work that was still undone and concerns about how the country
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moves forward. but overall there was a serenity there, more than i would have expected. >> now, hovering over all of this was the president's successor, of course, president donald trump. of course he's famously active on social media and often uses twitter to asail his opponents and at times announce major policy changes that have left the president's own aides and allies scrambling to catch up. but there was no mention of president trump by name during the interview. he kind of was just in the background. >> still stuck on the deferral of the kim and khloe question. the president is so adept at avoiding the hard questions. you mentioned the upcoming nuptials between prince harry and meghan markle. there's a bit of a tempest brewing about who might be on the guest list. what came up about that in this conversation? >> this is a bit of an awkward issue, maybe even an international incident that's brewing here, but we're still wondering what is going to come of this, whether barack obama will be invited.
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there was some speculation that inviting barack obama would actually mean having to invite the sitting president of the united states, again, donald trump who went unnamed during this interview. but take a listen to this kind of awkward exchange. >> enough to invite him to your wedding? >> i don't know about that. we haven't put the invites, all the guest list together yet, so who knows whether he's going to be invited or not. >> now, this is very sensitive because donald trump has been invited to a state visit here to britain. he's very likely to meet millions and millions of protesters, and that would overshadow even a royal wedding. david. >> you mention this as a bbc production. he's a guest editor this week. why was this such a big deal there in the uk, prince harry doing this? >> well, just having the royals out front and center and doing these sorts of things. remember, these are royals who are moving into this sort of common touch sort of position. and this sort of thing is
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actually quite rare. we are used to seeing members of the royal family going to occasions dedicating things, cutting ribbons, but doing something like this, especially kind of rubbing shoulders and getting front and center and almost asking invasive questions of other heads of state or former heads of state, that's a relatively new fit for this royal family, but it's a royal family that's really paving a new trail for themselves. as we saw just in the last reporting on the engagement with meghan markle, this young american divorcee, this is again a royal family that's really changing their image. this is parted of that. >> maude brtt bradley in londonk you very much. next, a pennsylvania town is buried by old man winter after record-setting snowfall. it's still a mess there this morning and we'll take you there live. plus we'll comb through a report by the inspector general revealing big problems with how the justice department handles sexual harassment within its own ranks. your insurance company won't
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welcome back. time now for your morning primer, everything you need to know to start your day. we begin in virginia with a tie-breaker to decide who wins a state house seat and thus the majority has been postponed until a court decides on a ballot challenged by democrats that had both candidates' names checked. russian president vladimir putin has officially submitted documents for a bid to be a candidate in march's presidential election. it would be his fourth term as russian president. eight northeastern states
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are suing the trump administration after the epa denied their request to crack down on smog pollution from surrounding states they claim is being blown in their direction. that denial was initially proposed by the obama administration just before inauguration day. this month fbi has received more than $140,000 in donations amid biting criticism from president trump. the mega millions lottery is still up for grabs. no one won last night's $277 million jackpot. the next drawing is on friday with an estimated jackpot of $306 million. in erie, pennsylvania, five feet of snow has battered the city. the city has issued a snow emergency over the dangerous and impassable roads. with more snow expected this weekend, the governor has put the national guard on active duty. let's go to msnbc's ron allen who is live in erie in the cold.
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what are conditions like today, ron? >> well, david, the big headline of the moment is that it appears that it stopped snowing and that may not sound like much but if you've been here several days, it's a big, big deal. there are flurries coming down now and there's some wind so we're getting some gusts as well, some snow blowing. but if the snow has stopped that's a big deal because it's going to give people a chance to dig out and get control of the situation. you mentioned the national guard. yes, they have been called out to help medical workers, doctors, hospitals, get back and forth, get patients back and forth. they're also helping out law enforcement. the authorities are still urging people to stay off the road so they can plow them. we're in the parking lot of the airport. the airport is over in that direction, you can see. you can see some of these cars are still buried. they have been here several days. the airport, they actually think is going to open around 2:00 this afternoon is the goal. there's one plane out there, a delta plane that's been sitting there several days. the question is will any planes
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come in and land or will that plane be able to take off. that's still unclear. but we saw them plowing the runways earlier today and they say they're going to do it. so that would be significant. but for the most part the city is still paralyzed, the roads are still covered in snow, especially secondary roads and side roads, just trying to make progress with that. again, if the snow holds off, they'll be able to do that. but the forecast is calling for several more inches in the coming days. that would put erie close to yet another record. 100 inches of snow in the month of december, which is what they average for the entire winter season. so that's where we are here. record territory. and again, it's been relentless, but hopefully we're getting a break here soon. david. >> ron, that's incredible. you must have been talking to folks in erie who are no stranger to big snowfalls. you mentioned the records we're seeing. how prepared was erie for the storm it's gotten? >> reporter: i don't know that anybody can prepare for this. we were talking to some of the locals and even for them this is extraordinary.
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five feet of snow. look over here and you'll see it's like huge mountains of snow. five feet in just a few days is a repocord. i've lost track of what the numbers are in records. it's about 60 inches of snow in a short period of time, a lot falling since christmas eve. this is the white christmas everybody was dreaming of so be careful what you dream for. the schools are closed, it's a holiday week, a lot of businesses are closed, it's a holiday week, so that helped a lot that a lot of people didn't have to get anywhere. but there are still people traveling. i-90, the main interstate and i-79 run through here and those are major interchanges and they were snow covered so that hampered people getting to and from on christmas day. hopefully things will clear out for new year's but it's been brutal even by what people here are used to. >> ron allen with us from erie who was at logan yesterday, at the erie airport today. we've got to find a snowy airport for you tomorrow.
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ron allen, thank you for the time. there are systemic issues with how the justice department handl handles sexual harassment complaints. getting the department to zero tolerance will require coordinated high-level action. i want to bring in julia ainsley who's had a look at the inspector general's report. give us a quick lay of the land he here. what stood out to you? >> the i.g. says there were 19 substantiated claims between fiscal year '12 and fiscal year 2016 which would be a surprise there were that number that would be substantiated and we haven't heard of these. of course a lot of these were done before the national conversation turned to the severity of sexual harassment and what happens when it's not being addressed. one of the specific allegations that came out was about a man who was in a supervisory role at the fbi who subjected subordinates to approximately three years of sexual harassment
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despite being counselled four times and even signing a pledge to refrain from such conduct. the harassment continued, clearly showing that the protocol to address something like this just wasn't working. "the washington post" also got more details through a freedom of information act request and they found that a deputy u.s. marshal had sex with approximately nine women in his office. these are the kind of things that seem like they would be coming up today in the harvey weinstein climate, but these somehow kind of went under the rug for a long time. >> is that why this is coming to the fore now, this was a report released back in june. why is it in the spotlight now, julia? >> i think it's in the spotlight for a few reasons. one is the national conversation taking these things more seriously, but i think to a degree it's because "the washington post" was ail to get more details. when we saw this report june 1st, i don't think many
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reporters were aware of it. this was after a crazy month at doj when jim comey was fired, robert mueller was appointed. i don't think this got the attention that it needed. now "the post" was ail to gble additional details. a lot of times we want the name of the person being accused and want to hear from the victim. it's a little different when it's put into this wonky white paper. >> the inspector general highlights the problem and does the research. what is the department saying about how it plans to take action in light of this report? >> we have reached out to the justice department but i have not heard how they plan to take action. in fact we don't believe that they put out a statement immediately after this in june. that is all still reporting in progress. if that changes, we will definitely get back to you with those details. >> julia, thank you very much. steel workers helped send donald trump to the white house believing his promises to reinvigorate their industry, but here we are nearly a year in and instead we've seen the opposite.
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at the pentagon papers trial in california today, it was revealed that e. howard hunt convicted in the watergate conspiracy planned the burglary of a doctor's office in beverly hills in a meeting at the white house. president trump has repeatedly promised to protect and revive many industries across the country. one of his favorites is american steel. >> we're going to fight for american workers and american-made steel, and that's beginning immediately. as i travel the country, i saw the shuttered factories and the shuttered dreams and i pledged
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that i would take action. i think it's probably one of the primary reasons i'm sitting here today as president. >> a new "new york times" report says layoffs are coming in september. a plant announced it would layoff 150 of the plant's 207 workers. let me ask you, first of all, for your reaction here. you heard the rhetoric, the populist rhetoric on the campaign trail. what do you make of what's come to pass over the last year when it comes to steel in particular? >> i think that donald trump is learning what every president learns, which is that it's very difficult for any individual president to have a real effect on the american economy or the global economy. you know, the best you can do is set the right things in motion so that your successor has some success or even your successor's successor. so when we look at the american steel industry, when we saw the real huge decline in american steel jobs obviously after the
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'70s was right around 2000 when it started to dip and that was when china entered most favored nation status. that was a bipartisan policy. republicans liked it, democrats liked it, but we got this flood of cheap chinese steel. when you look at that plant, it's owned by a luxembourg firm that started in india, they just bought a german company -- sorry, german and steel plants in alabama. steel is very much a global industry. so if you're going to start saying i'm going to bring jobs back in this industry, you have to start messing with the flow of international capital, not just the flow of international goods. this is very difficult to do even as the american president. what we're going to see in steel over the next year is that china for reasons completely unrelated to donald trump is trying to clean up its steel industry by shuttering old plants that kick out dirty air. it's a pollution play that china
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is making that will have the biggest effect on the price of steel. >> i want you to get us up to speed on what's happened with this administration and its trade policy. there was the threat of tariffs. you've got three people guiding the policy, wilbur ross, robert lighthizer and peter navarro, an academic turned expert on trade when it comes to china. there's been the threat of tariffs but we haven't seen them come to pass. where do things pass? >> i talked to peter navarro and wilbur ross over the election and they really believe that changing u.s. trade policy would create huge economic growth. i think they're running into the same realities that the president has run into with lots of things with the economy, which is that when you talk about tariffs, what you're really talking about, and this is boring but important, is harmonizing regulation. it's no longer the 19th century. we haven't just say you cannot bring in coal, you cannot bring in steel. we're trading lots of things that are very difficult to
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define. if somebody puts in a labor regulation in another country, that could be seen as a trade barrier. it could be seen as a labor regulation. these things are very difficult to tease out. what we're finding is something that i think economists have been slowly learning over the last 30 years. and again it's the same thing the uk has figured out with brexit. you cannot just say we're going to stop things at the border because often what you trade is not just a commodity like grain or steel or iron ore. >> let me ask you about the role uncertainty plays here. we talk about the context of where businesses invest or what they do. when it comes to steel, when it comes to coal, a belgium based company or chinese-based company, how much is under certainty about this administration's trade policy playing a role? >> that's been interesting to watch and a very important question. one of donald trump's gifts as an economic policy maker is that he's an amazing jaw boner. he has the ability to create consumer confidence, business
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confidence, right? we really saw those numbers jump right after the election, and they stayed high. they haven't had as much of an effect on actual purchasing behavior but the real effect is there. he said be confident, people were confident. and that is having -- that's playing out in trade policy as well. he says expect tariffs. what we're seeing is even though we haven't seen the tariffs yet, we're seeing real evidence that other countries are expecting tariffs to arrive. that great piece by anna swanson today, what she pointed out is that the threat, the jaw boning of these tariffs is causing these chinese companies again, which are already about to be closed because china is worried about the environmental consequences of cheap steel, are trying to dump as much as they can as quickly as they can in america before tariffs arrive. >> all right, thank you very much for the time this morning, appreciate it. >> thank you, david. if there's one industry that's benefitting from having trump in the white house, it is the comedy circuit. from fallon to snl and kimmel, we're taking a look back at late
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night in 2017. so we sent that sample off to ancestry. my ancestry dna results are that i am 26% nigerian. i am just trying to learn as much as i can about my culture. i put the gele on my head and i looked into the mirror and i was trying not to cry. because it's a hat, but it's like the most important hat i've ever owned. discover the story only your dna can tell. order your kit now at ancestrydna.com. when it comes to travel, i sweat the details. late checkout... ...down-alternative pillows... ...and of course, price. tripadvisor helps you book a... ...hotel without breaking a sweat.
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i am playing clips from late night shows you may have missed overnight. one role into donald trump's presidency, the role of late night television has changed dramatically. presidents have always been easy targets, these days it is almost impossible to watch five minutes of a comedy show without a mention of politics. with that in mind, we take a look back at some of the best moments from late night in 2017. >> welcome, welcome.
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thank me. thank me. and buckle up. because i'm coming in hot. >> according to a recent article, chardonnay is making a comeback. >> and they said i wouldn't be able to create jobs. >> boo! i'll pretend those are mooches and not boos, steve. >> you are charged with the job of going in front of the press and saying that the inauguration crowd was the biggest crowd, i think, the biggest audience -- >> yes, i'm aware of it. >> even though "the tonight show" is not a political show, it is my responsibility to stand up against intolerance and extremism as a human being. >> they did an echo cardiogram and found that billy was born with a heart disease. no parent should ever have to decide if they can afford to
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safe their child's life. hi, i'm jimmy. this is billy. i was out last week because this guy had a heart surgery. but look, he's fine, everybody. >> the jury of your peers, your community, sees this evidence and decides that even this is self-defense. that is truly depressing. because what they are basically saying is, in america, it is officially reasonable to be afraid of a person just because they are black. >> now, i don't want to belittle the second beliefs of second amendment enthusiasts. we all know god wants us to have guns. he says it right there in the nine commandments. but thoughts and prayers are not a substitute for action. and pretty much all americans want action on this. >> this is the time i would like to reflect on all the good things i have done this year. it will only take a minute. >> before we begin, i know that myself and the press have gotten
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off to a rocky start. all right. all right, all right. >> i'm the attorney general of the whole united states. >> voters in alabama will never elect someone who had relations with a minor. >> are you sure about that? >> no. >> it's not george doctor octopus, it's george papadopoulos. >> george -- >> papadopoulos. >> papa -- >> dopoulos. >> all right. it's been three years since hurricane maria. and the lights may not come on until spring now. a growing health crisis has evolved in the wake of the storm. what is being done about it is coming up. accumulations up to 8 inches... ...don't know if you can hear me, but [monica] what's he doing? [lance] can we get a shot of this cold front, right here. winter has arrived. whooo! hahaha
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that wraps things up this hour. i'm in for stephanie ruhle. coming up, more news with hallie jackson. thank you, sir. we are on assignment and on the road in sunny, south florida, where the president is spending his working winter vacation. and so far this morning, all quiet on the west palm front. but not so back in washington. where two federal agencies are now facing new controversies. first, you've got the department of defense now being sued by three major cities who say the department is failing to update the national background check system. they argue those updates might have been able to stop that horrific shooting at a church in rural texas last month. new this morning, the pentagon's rep responding.
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and also new today, details about what is brewing at the department of justice, specifics on what the inspector general calls potentially systemic issues of sexual harassment there. plus, with our show on the road here in florida, we're getting an update on the situation in puerto rico that has driven thousands of puerto ricans to this state. the latest report finds some islanders may not have power until may, may at the earliest. why they are feeling forgotten this morning on what is a surprisingly busy wednesday morning. we have our team of reporters joining us to cover it all. let's go to hans nichols at the pentagon with more on the lawsuit filed against the dod. hans, i know you have a response from the department of defense right now. fill us in on that and on the lawsuit, too. >> reporter: well, what the lawsuit is trying to do is force the department of defense to actually comply with the law that when there is the equivalent of a felony conviction by one of their service members, it then gets transferred to the national database. one of the challenges they have had is that all four services have been repor

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